New officials will lead to new opportunities

The Daily Cougar would like to extend congratulations to new UH System provost John Antel, who will take office on February 1 and be confirmed by the UH Board of Regents in their meeting Feb. 6. He has filled many roles at the University in his 28 years as a staff member, such as chair of the Economics department and most recently as dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. In his role as provost, Antel will focus on building academic excellence within the University. He was preceded by interim provost Dr. Jerald Strickland.

The Honors College at UH also has a new leader. William Monroe, executive assistant Dean and English professor, has been appointed Dean of the college effective today. Also, the Blaffer Gallery has selected Claudia Schmuckli, formerly the interim director, as their new director. She has been a member of the UH team since 2004 and was the interim director for the gallery during the 9-month search for a replacement.

There is, in all three of these major appointments, a common thread – all three officeholders have been members of the University for several years. In previous key office searches, bringing in outside talent as a way of increasing cultural diversity and assimilating new viewpoints into the campus was standard procedure; However, it appears the trend has changed.

UH has a unique culture, a statement that can be made about any major university campus, however, the cosmopolitan nature of our culture and the city in which it nestles has significant effects on the development of that culture and towards the goal of Tier One status.

Bringing long-term members of UH to greater leadership positions within the organization and as advocates of our institution to outside funding is a smart move. These key members are more familiar with our pitfalls and areas of excellence, and their experience and community membership are compelling tools in their cabinet of qualifications and skills. Given the theme of change in the country and in the University, we hope to rise to the challenge of making UH an integral part of that change on the technological and intellectual fronts.

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